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AUS: $12 billion on Y2K a good investment

The billions of dollars spent by Australia's government and industry on Y2K repairs and planning was a valuable investment in securing Australia as a blue-chip investment and tourism destination in the new millennium. Speaking at the Brisbane Y2K Infrastructure Forum Senator Ian Campbell, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, said that only yesterday the British Broadcasting Corporation had named Australia and Finland as the safest destination for tourists.

The Forum would provide Queensland businesses with a high level of shared information, critical to businesses now checking their supply chains and finalising contingency plans, Senator Campbell said.

'Today's Forum gives Queensland businesses and the community the opportunity to hear from key service providers, both national and state-based, about their Y2K preparations,' said Senator Campbell during his address at the Brisbane Forum.

'The open and accurate information showcased at the Infrastructure Forums has played an important role in maintaining Australia's position amongst the best Y2K prepared nations globally,' said Senator Campbell.

'The co-operation of individual companies across industry sectors to provide up-to-date, accurate information, is for the benefit of businesses and the community alike. These efforts have provided numerous lessons that will translate well in Australia's emerging digital economy in the years beyond 2000.

'Those lessons learned will contribute to Australia's economic strength and its attractiveness as a business hub. In the final analysis, the effort will ensure the Australian digital revolution continues as an engine for economic growth and job creation. I consider the $12 - $15 billion and massive management effort spent on Y2K projects to be an important investment.' asserted Senator Campbell.

Senator Campbell also noted that the Brisbane Forum was the first to be held since the '9999' date roll-over, saying 'Although there were no systemic problems reported, anecdotal evidence appears to indicate that work remains to be done in the commercial property sector where failures were reported.

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